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Letter: Saving a heartbeat through common sense

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In follow-up to a May 13 article in this paper, “N.D. lawmakers ask attorney general to appeal judge’s block on abortion law,” common sense measures have been taken in North Dakota with an appeal to the Eighth Circuit court.

North Dakota’s heartbeat law is a reasonable common-sense solution in answering what the Roe court refused to address that is a common-sense, safe, inexpensive medical method for determining viability of unborn life.

Roe clearly defined that the state has a “compelling interest” and a duty to protect unborn life, but then failed in providing the states with a realistic means of determining where that protection should begin.

The Roe court applied “shifting sand” law suggesting that the compelling interest marker must be no later than 24 weeks of gestation but left medical knowledge to change this marker of viability.

Furthermore, an inalienable right is unlikely to change with the passing of time, thereby making viability claims “suspect” as a mechanism for determining when a civil right begins or ends. Such a “shifting sand” marker places unreasonable burden on states in trying to find a real “common-sense” demarcation point between the proposed personal civil right and the state compelling right to protect.

If viability is a marker to determine when states have a compelling interest to protect unborn life, then the court must provide the means of testing viability at every stage or accept the realistic “common-sense” marker of heartbeat as that boundary. Everyone recognizes that where there is a heartbeat there is life.

Judicial decisions should be “common sense” and constitutional in nature. It is nonsensical for state law to be overturned at district court level seeing the Supreme Court invited those challenges with its own failure to provide a “common-sense” method for finding Roe’s boundaries.

I believe that life begins at conception, and that is when the life of the unborn must be protected. Nevertheless, let’s take a “common-sense” approach to end the taking of life. Kudos to our neighboring state North Dakota which had the courage, conviction and fortitude to pass a common sense law to protect the life of the unborn in a bipartisan manner.

Again, the North Dakota heartbeat law only makes common sense.

Patricia Gould

Bemidji

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